Maaveerar Naal (Great Heroes’ Day; Tamil: மாவீரர் நாள் Māvīrar Nāḷ) is a remembrance day observed by Eelam Tamils to remember the deaths of militants who fought for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). It is held each year on 27 November, the date on which the first LTTE cadre, Lt. Shankar (Sathiyanathan alias Suresh), is said to have died in combat in 1982.Traditionally oil lamps are lit for the three days ending on the 27 November and the Tamil Eelam flag is raised at ceremonies. The symbol for Maaveerar Naal is the karthigaipoo (Gloriosa superba), which blooms during November.
The first Maaveerar Naal was held on 27 November 1989. The date was chosen as it was the anniversary of the first LTTE cadre to die in combat, Lt. Shankar (Sathiyanathan alias Suresh), who died on 27 November 1982. On 27 November 1989 around 600 LTTE cadres gathered secretly in the jungles near Nithikaikulam in Manal Aru, Mullaitivu District, to remember their fallen comrades who at that time numbered around 1,300. In his speech LTTE leader V. Prabhakaran told the gathering that if he ever betrayed Tamil Eelam they must kill him.
Following the withdrawal of the Indian Peace Keeping Force in 1990 the LTTE gained controlled of large areas of territory in the north and east of Sri Lanka. The LTTE started developing ways to commemorate its dead heroes. They built thuyilum illam (resting place) for their maaveerar (great heroes) in territory they controlled.In 1991 the week leading up to Maaveerar Naal was declared Great Heroes’ Week. This resulted in Prabhakaran’s birthday, which falls on 26 November, being included in the commemorations. The celebration of Prabhakaran’s birthday began to overshadow the Maaveerar Naal commemorations to an extent that some even believed that Maaveerar Naal was a celebration of Prabhakaran’s birthday. This resulted in Prabhakaran banning any celebration of his birthday.Commemorations eventually started amongst the growing Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora.
Over the years the commemorations became more elaborate, involving meetings, religious rituals, processions and exhibitions with cut-outs, posters and handbills of the dead cadres being distributed widely. Every village and every school were expected commemorate their dead cadres. Families of the dead cadres would gather at thuyilum illam to mourn their dead relatives. The culmination of the commemorations was a great function at a special location at which the reclusive Prabhakaran gave a speech which started at 6.05pm, the precise time Lt. Shankar died. The highly anticipated speeches began to take on the form of an annual policy statement by the LTTE and were broadcast on LTTE affiliated radio and TV stations in LTTE controlled areas and abroad.
After the Sri Lankan military recaptured the Jaffna peninsula in 1995 they destroyed LTTE cemeteries – thuyilum illam – in the area including those at Chaadi, Ellangkulam, Kodikamam and Kopay. Following the start of the Norwegian mediated peace process in 2002 the LTTE started rebuilding their war cemeteries. Maaveerar Naal commemorations were allowed in government territory. In 2004 Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MPs were allowed to light oil lamps in front of the Parliament to commemorate Maaveerar Naal. However, after the peace process stalled the Sri Lankan military started imposing restrictions on Maaveerar Naal commemorations and destroying LTTE cemeteries.
27th November was made Great Heroes’ Day from 1989 onwards to commemorate the death of Cankar. In Tamil it is called mavirar nal, “Day of the Great Heroes”. This day was prolonged in 1990 to a whole week. The 27th takes the position of a national day in the present form of the anticipated nationstate of Tamililam. Its purpose is to channel veneration of all LTTE martyrs. It prevents commemorative rituals from being dispersed all over the year.
For a Westerner it can be shortly described as an agon of the LTTE in which the agony of the heroes’ death is commemorated and transformed into a victory. Mavirar nal, “Great Heroes’ Day”, is celebrated as elucci nal. This later expression has the double meaning of “Day of edification” and “Day of rising”. The participant may choose either, one, or better both meanings, according to his or her understanding and liking. “Great Heroes’ Day” is indeed a day of mourning, of agony, but it is transformed into a Day of edification and, or, rising.
Veluppillai Pirapakaran was very close to Cankar. There are many stories about the last hours between the two. The fact that there are so many stories about it and that 27th November has been made Great Heroes’ Day and this day even the National Day of Tamililam, indicates that the death of Cankar was a key experience for Veluppillai Pirapakaran. We have to take this experience as the seal on the determination to kill and to get killed – to the last man.
The original experience and what really happened is today overlaid by levels of reflections in retelling the same story. Sankar is made a collective focal point to reexperience the mourning experience with its predictable outcome. The outcome is clear, to create a preparedness to kill and to get killed in the very act of killing.
One LTTE text prescribes that the week of the Great Hero begins at 9 am. followed by the hoisting of the national banner (the Tiger flag). The entire Tamililam having risen and put on beauty, shall shine in fullness, says the text. The entire Tamil population is in happiness.
The flood of more than lifesize posters depicting Cankar on 27th November at the crossroads of Yalppanam is more than impressive; it is overwhelming. All the media are full of his life story, that touches a fundamental mourning behaviour in a martial society.
One LTTE text says that the tupis of the Great Heroes, houses, lanes, houses of learning, public places, the whole population indeed, and all people have themselves become holy on this day. According to this same text, the land of Tamihlam shines with new fullness, having become adorned for all these Great Heroes. According to this text, this kind of commemoration of the Great Heroes should not just be an event, but should develop into a cultural monument and become a cultural element.
During maravar nal cultural performances are arranged. “Cultural performance” is an English rendering for Tamil kalai nikaleci, which literally means “performance of erudition”. It can be a drama, dance, song or all three, very often combined. The LTTE has many wellknown poets writing in the spirit of the LTTE.
A dramatic performance of and together with a famous poem by Cuppiramaniya Parati (18821921) made into a recital called accamillayaccamillai, “fear is not, fear is not” or enru taniyaminta cutantira takam, ‘When will the thirst for liberation be quenched?”, last but not least as a teru kuttu, “street drama”, is highly appreciated. It is worthwhile to look at the public recital in 1990 at one of these two poems by Parati, because both give a contribution to the concepts of heroism, which evidently have been incorporated in a cultural arrangement by the LTTE, recorded, relayed on Cutarcan Television, which is the local television of the LTTE in Yalppanam, and sent out in many copies to the Tamils in exile.
Parati was not only an Indian patriot; his poetic themes also show concern for the poor, the welfare of the common man, adoration of the ancients, confidence in the future generation, concern for women’s liberation, children’s welfare, and human values, but above all for India’s freedom from slavery under colonial power. He became a makkal kavinar, ‘”people’s poet”. Although his poems were written in Tamil they became known in several Indian languages, and many a militant within the Tamil resistance of today knows his Parati by heart, in Tamil, of course.
Accamillayaccamillai is the name of a poem created in 1914 by Parati, and is the first part of a refrain of that poem which is part of a larger text called Mata Mani Vacakam. The poem recited in Tamil in 1990 at mavirar nal goes like this (in the translation of K G Seshadri):
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all,
Though all the world be ranged against us,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though we are slighted and scorned by others,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though fated to a life of beggary and want,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all,
Though all we owned and held as dear be lost,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though the corsetbreasted cast their glances,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though friends should feed us poison brew,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though spears reeking flesh come and assail us,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
Though the skies break and fall on the head,
Fear we not, fear we not, fear we not at all!
In the performance of Parati’s poem in Yalppanam in 1990, the poem speaks to the performers and listeners of the recital about liberation from slavery, implicitly, applied to the present situation, of the liberation from slavery of the Sinhala dominated administration in Tamil speaking areas. The poem is vague enough to find its implementation in a different situation than originally intended, in a different place and a different time from its origin. In Yalppanam, on mavirar nal, it was performed by actors of both sexes and all age groups on a stage, and the recital was in the rhythm of a march, indicating firm determination.
Another poet is Paratitacan (18911964), who contributed to the martial language of the Dravidian movement and influenced the writing of the poet Kaci Anantan, who is one of the most important living and active LTTE poets. Paratitacan was a promoter of Dravidian separatism from India.
There is a tradition of singing songs on many occasions, not only Martyrs’ Day, celebrating the martyrs of the LTTE. They are now called pulippatukal, “Tiger songs”, but they continue a tradition of parani patutal, “praising war”, i.e. a genre of songs that glorifies the hero who killed elephants. This genre was popularised by parts of the Dravidian movement.
The tiger songs are distributed by the LTTE on cassettes and CDs all over the world to Tamils in exile. The most famous ones are by the poets Kaci Anantan and Putuvai. Both are highly active at present creating “martial poetry” or “poetry of resistance”.
This constructive literary aspect of LTTE martial culture, being a kalai nikaleci, `’performance of erudition”, is often forgotten in the image of the critics of the LTTE. It is very important to identify and highlight this aspect. It is both an expression and a mobilisation of the common thinking and liking of the people with the LTTE. On this level of kalai nikalcci the LTTE enjoys the strongest support from the citizens of Yalppanam. The LTTE may fail in its military adventure and experiment, but what it has achieved by its kalai nikalcci will certainly remain and be cultivated for generations to come. It will constitute the embers of resistance that no enemy will be able to extinguish.
A Switzerland-based Eezham Tamil youth group, ‘Phoenix – the Next Generation’, has photostatically reproduced the rare 314-page compilation officially published by the Headquarters of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in September 1993 in Jaffna. The book contains selected letters, interviews and statements of LTTE Leader Velupillai Pirapaharan starting from his first media interview in March 1984. The compilation consists, amongst others, of a letter that declines LTTE representation at a meeting held in New York in May 1985, appeals to the leaders of India and Tamil Nadu during the LTTE-IPKF war in 1987, and a letter of solidarity addressed to South African (ANC) leader, the late Oliver Tambo, in July 1988. The reproduction has been made from a book obtained at the public library of Jaffna in the past. The book, with ID 9907, is no longer accessible at the library.
The compilation is titled Eṉatu Makkaḷiṉ Viṭutalaikkāka (எனது மக்களின் விடுதலைக்காக, For the Liberation of My People).
Nitharsan, the coordinator of Puradsi Media of the youth group, led the launch event in Bern on Sunday, where the first copy of the publication was dedicated to those who sacrificed their lives for Tamil Eelam.
The event also featured a speech by a former LTTE member, who had closely witnessed the cultural and upbringing projects of the LTTE in the two decades that followed the period covered by the book in the de-facto state of Tamil Eelam.The former LTTE member appreciated the publication work being carried out by the youth group. Only by knowing the contemporary politics and the struggle of the preceding decades the future generations could evolve the future discourse, the ex-LTTE member said.
The book also reflects the significance of political renditions in Tamil by the late Anton Balasingham before, during and immediately after the Indian intervention.
Nitharshan, in his speech, said that the book was a prime source enlightening the readers how the LTTE leader evolved a genuinely independent movement without getting into the agenda of any outside power seeking to influence or exploit the armed liberation movement of Eezham Tamils.
“We [the Tamil diaspora youth] should not allow us to get waylaid by the talk of unitary and federal forms of the constitution in the island. As far as we are concerned, our source of inspiration should always be the de-facto state of Tamil Eelam that existed before the SL State waged the genocidal onslaught in 2009 with the backing of all the outside powers.”
He observed how the British allowed the Sinhala nationalist leaders in the South to evolve the unitary state system in Ceylon into unitary and genocidal Sri Lanka in the post-Second World War context. Furthermore, the Cold War era had emboldened the unitary state system, which under the rule of JR Jayawardene introduced the executive presidential system following the US model in 1978.
The USA was toeing the same geopolitical line of the British, giving significance to Trincomalee-oriented naval access in the [then the overwhelmingly Tamil] East and air access in the West [of the Sinhala South].
It was in 1996, after the period covered in the book up to 1993, the elite US ‘Green Beret’ corps provided training to the SL military, he recalled.
However, the LTTE-led armed struggle continued achieving military and diplomatic parity of status in 2001.
During the peace process, the powers openly recognised that it was not possible to militarily defeat the LTTE. However, they contributed significantly to the ‘One State One Military in the island’ paradigm by tilting the power of balance and allowing the SL State to complete the genocidal onslaught, he said.
Following is an English translation of the contents featured in the book, as provided by the Puradsi Media:
Foreword I – IV
History is my guide
State oppression & armed resistance
The national force of Tamil Eelam: Leader Prabhakaran’s letter
Ceasefire & peace talks
Why did the Thimbu Talks end in failure?
A liberated sovereign Tamil Eelam state is our struggle’s goal
The Sinhalese government prefers a military solution
Traitors are more dangerous than enemies
Why was the organisation of the Liberation Tigers formed?
Struggling for freedom is our historic duty
The interference of the Indian military in Tamil Eelam is unnecessary
My life’s background, goals and priciples
The Tamil homeland is the foundation of our nationalism
Hunger strike unto death: the national leader’s explanation
The Tamil Nadu government bends to the national leader’s demands
Webs spun to destruct the tamil nation
Ahimsa ideology & the armed struggle
Prosperity of the proletariat
The historically significant Suthumalai Declaration
The Indian government is upholding its national interests
Thiyagi Thileepan is an idealistic flame
Arresting commanders contradicts the agreement
The unforgivable crime committed against our people
The war given by India: a letter to M.G.R. from the national leader
Letters written by the national leader to India’s Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi
The Indian military’s atrocities: a letter to the U.N. by the national leader
Indo – LTTE war: the national leader’s explanation
Send the UNHRC to Tamil Eelam
The national leader’s 3rd letter to Rajiv Gandhi
The national leader’s declaration to the World Tamil Conference
The national leader’s request to the African & United Nations
The oppressed will eventually succeed
The UN must attempt to expel the Indian forces
The national leader’s request to a conference held by Non-Aligned Movement
The most significant historic mistake committed by the Indian government
A dark chapter in our liberation struggle
Our excessive self-confidence is our strength and weakness
Annai Poopathi’s sacrifice is unmatched in global history
The event which gave us the spiritual strength to resist the Indian superpower
Our history is written by our martyrs’ blood
The women have risen as a revolutionary force
A self – sufficient economy is the foundation of a separate state
Revolutionary creations are necessary to cultivate the liberation struggle
All of the people who contributed to the revolutionary struggle are māmaṉitar
A war cannot be conducted if there is a fear for losses
The path to a political solution: The national leader’s explanation
Sencholai children’s home: the national leader’s congratulatory remarks
May it sound as the war drums for a war of truth
For those yearning for heroic liberation, determination is the strongest weapon
What is the liberation of the women? The national leader’s explanation
Dharma will prevail in a war of truth
People are facing the torrents of oppression like a mountain
Our arts and culture are the soul of our nation
Politics is the service provided to suffering people
I have a dream which must become a reality
The martyrs who stand as the pillars of our liberation organisation
Honesty, virtue and discipline are essential for the implementation of justice
The struggle is the shield of education; education is the struggle’s fort
Kittu is an individual legacy: a stunning idealist
What is the path to a peaceful solution? Thalaivar’s explanation to BBC
Women’s liberation struggle: The LTTE’s spark
When life is incomplete, knowledge is essential
Iron men in their goals: the national leader’s dedication for the Black Tigers
The poet who renewed wartime literature
Social justice must blossom upon the basis of truth
A Private War Movie honors its real-life subject with a sober appraisal of the sacrifices required of journalists on the front lines – and career-best work Celebrated war correspondent Marie Colvin
In that movie Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam( LTTE ) misled that they are smoking in the battle field and organization !
LTTE is only the one Militants group in the world has very strict on discipline no drinks, smoking or any sexual activity before marriage in the organization.
No one can deny the strict standrads set by Leader Prabhakaran for the LTTE Cadres ( both Militray & Civil ) Until the last stage of the war and over all LTTE cadres were known for following a strict discipline and that credit goes to their leader Prabhakaran . No one cant deny that LTTE Cadres were a disciplined lot compared to other armed fighters over the world.
Even Karuna alis muralitharan split the ltte because his discipline was questioned ! And scared to face the strict punishments !
In western culture smoking is not consider a bad thing or discipline but in Tamil society not like that !
Why this scene inserted in “the private war ” movie ? purposely ?
As usual No Tamil organization or activists question about this ?
Prabhakaran – a Pioneer in Military Discipline —by Sachi Sri Kantha, November 25, 2014
To the memory of Velupillai Prabhakaran, the leader of LTTE, and his erstwhile colonels (other than traitors like Karuna and K.P.), I submit this felicitous essay on his 60th birthday.
In March 1, 2010, I contributed a parody of a beautiful poem by John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887), captioned ‘The blind men and the elephant’. I titled my parody as, ‘Six Blind Women of Gringo Land – who went to see the Tiger’.
There is a reason why I bring my 2010 creation here. First, to refresh the readers of what I wrote, ‘with apology to John Godfrey Saxe’.
It was six women of Gringo Land to learning much inclined
Who went to see the tiger though all of them were blind
That each by observation might satisfy her mind
The first approached the tiger and happening to fall
Against her broad and sturdy side, at once began to shriek
‘God bless me! But the tiger is very like a slippery pestle!
The second, feeling the canine, cried ‘Ho! What have we here
So very round and smooth and sharp? To me ‘tis mighty clear
This wonder of a tiger is very like a spear!
The third approached the animal, and happening to take
The growling jaw within her hands, thus boldly up and screamed:
‘I see,’ quoth she, ‘the tiger is very likely a terror!’
The fourth reached out an eager hand, and felt about its fur
‘What most this wondrous beast is like is mighty plain’, quoth she:
‘Tis clear enough this tiger is very likely a bear!’
The fifth, who chanced to touch the claw, said: ‘E’en the blindest woman
Can tell what this resembles most; deny the fact who can,
This marvel of a tiger is very like a needle blade!’
The sixth no sooner had begun about the beast to grope,
Than seizing on the swinging tail that fell within her scope,
‘I see,’ quoth she, ‘the tiger is very like a rope!’
And so these women of Gringo Land disputed loud and long,
Each in her own opinion exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right, and all were in the wrong!
I also quote excerpts from the first paragraph written then. “I should identify these six blind women from Gringo Land, who went to see the Tiger. Five of the six were from the venerable New York Times. The grandma was Barbara Crossette who was there in the late 1980s. Then, she was followed by Celia Dugger in the late 1990s. Amy Waldman and Somini Sengupta covered the 2000s. Lately, Lydia Polgreen has moved in. There was another one, Mia Bloom, who was a pretending terrorism scholar and linguist during the CFA period (2002-2004). None of them could read, write or speak either in Tamil or in Sinhalese. Their coverage about the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam was sloppy at best and humor-generating at worst….”
The main focus of these six Gringo women were to portray the Tamil Tigers as terrorists, suicide bombers and ‘child’ soldiers. None of them cared to present the positive side of Prabhakaran’s Tiger army.Sex equality and lack of sexual harassment in LTTE army were special attributes of Prabhakaran’s discipline training. These were totally ignored by these blinded journalists. Punishment for such heinous crimes for disregarding the discipline inculcated by the leader was instant death. Even traitor Karuna (after he was sacked from the LTTE) had described in 2004, a case of two young love-struck LTTEers (a guy and a girl) who disregarded the discipline relating to sexual conduct were served with death as punishment. Karuna’s main motive in announcing this particular case to the media, was to splash mud on Prabhakaran’s cruel mindedness. But, Karuna had ignored the discipline Prabhakaran wanted for his army. What is Karuna’s plight now, after 10 years? What happened to all the empty boasts of him, as a better leader for Tamils than Prabhakaran? Was he able to project any leadership? He could only function as a sin-eater to the Rajapaksa clan without having any following either among Tamils or Sinhalese or Muslims.
The concept of sex equality was a non-entity in the Sinhala army, well into 1990s. Only after Prabhakaran showed the lead, the Sinhala army came to subscribe to this concept reluctantly. About the sexual harassment traits, torture and rapes perpetrated by the Sri Lankan army on Tamil population who were detained by them, the less said the better. The Lancet medical journal in 1999 and 2000 published two short reports describing the sexual torture on Tamils perpetrated by the Sri Lankan military personnel.
Lately, decades old, entrained culture of sexual harassment in Uncle Sam’s military had burst open (See below the Sources, for selected news reports on US military sexual assaults). Check also the Pat Oliphant’s cartoon, presented nearby, on this theme. Early this year, Helene Cooper reported that, “In 2012 there were an estimated 26,000 sexual assaults on military men and women, but only 3,374 were reported and only 880 cases were prosecuted. The implication is that keeping prosecution of those cases within the chain of command intimidates victims, who fear retribution from sexual assault to their commanders.” Last year, Jennifer Steinhauer reported, “A recent Pentagon survey found that an estimated 26,000 men and women in the military were sexually assaulted last year, up from 19,000 in 2010.” Compared to the performances of recent American Presidents and the Pentagon’s five star Generals, Prabhakaran’s record on military discipline for more than a quarter century was implausible and imperishable indeed. Isn’t Prabhakaran a pioneer in military discipline?
Prabhakaran – a victim of Procrustean Bias
For those who are uninitiated on Procrustean bias, I provide the details first. According to Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, “Procrustes, in Greek legend, was a robber of Attica, who placed all who fell into his hands upon an iron bed. If they were longer than the bed he cut off the overhanging pats, if shorter he stretched them till they fitted it. He was slain by Theseus. Hence, any attempt to reduce men to one standard, one way of thinking, or one way of acting, is called placing them on Procrustes’ bed.”
Academics and journalists from the West have a specific mind-set of whom to designate as a terrorist (who doesn’t have a Christian name or a Jewish name and whose skin color is not ‘white’), who can be fitted in their Procrustes’ bed. A study of their books and research papers reveal this Procrustean bias. I wonder how could those six Gringo women (who had regular eyesight) ignore the positive traits in Prabhakaran’s leadership? I have yet to come across in the writings of any of these six women on Tamil Tigers, a particular distinction which separated LTTE soldiers from that of the beastly Sri Lankan army (1983-87 and 1990-2009 and up to 2012) and the Indian army (1987-1990). Not only these journalists, but also incompetent terrorism scholars among men (the likes of Robert Pape, Bruce Hoffman, Walter Laqueur and Rohan Gunaratna) are also blind to this Procrustean bias. University of Chicago’s political science professor Robert Pape’s book, ‘Dying to Win’ (2005) is an excellent example for such Procrustean bias-tinged analysis.
Sources (chronologically arranged)
Ivor H. Evans: Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, Centenary Edition, harper & Row, New York, 1970, p. 865.
Welsh J.: Sri Lanka: torture continues. Lancet, 1999 July 31; 354: 420.
Peel M, Mahtani A, Hinshelwood G and Forrest D.: The sexual abuse of men in detention in Sri Lanka. Lancet, 2000 June 10; 355: 2069-2070.
Robert A. Pape: Dying to Win, Random House Trade Paperbacks, New York, 2005.
Jennifer Steinhauer: Remark by Obama complicates military sexual assault trials. New York Times, July 13, 2013.
Helene Cooper: Senate rejects blocking military commanders from sex assault cases.
New York Times, March 6, 2014.
Helene Cooper: Two cases, one conclusion on military justice. New York Times, March 21, 2014.
“Nandikadal” – it is not just a name a place carries. It is the name that sums up the identity of Tamils determined to resurrect themselves. It is the name that characterizes an ethnic group. It is the name that offers enormous hope to the struggling ethnic groups. It is the name that is synonymous with declaration of war of an ethnic group that has assimilated within itself the magic words of “Pirabaharaniyam”.
It is the mother of all battlefields, offering a beacon of hope to all the subjugated ethnic groups. It is a holy place, the very mention of the name sends a chill down the establishments of the world that terrorises its own people; the corporate and world conglomerates that support their survival, and the fronts that had hitherto created a world order.
A landscape filled with marshes and grasses, gobbled up a revolutionary leader, only to deliver principles of liberation that was radically progressive in nature.
It gave not just lessons to the struggling ethnicities, it was a beacon that evolved from this land and was posing challenges like never before to the established world order.
The world records this piece of history as “Pirabaharaniyam”.
The liberation struggles that are waged against government sponsored terrorism, the inevitable violence that erupts as a result of a revolution, movements by people; all these events that can be termed as popular uprisings by ordinary people are being fiercely put down by ruthless governments’ world over in the name of “international relations” and “regional stability”. Without having an iota of knowledge on the said conspiracies by the Governments world over, there is a measure among us to pin criminal responsibility on the Tamil Tigers alone. But Nandikadal not only confronts such measures with logical justifications but also gives a doctrine that is applicable to the larger world.
Nandikadal gives enough cautions and warnings on how these forces turn the subjugated and struggling ethnic groups against leaders who best represent them.
An evidence that stands firmly behind the historic figure – a psyche that is omnipresent between the Tamil populace and the Tigers; the historical happenings that demands analysing them in a just fashion. Nandikadal proceeds to smash the conspiracies of ruthless Governments for fabricating and systematically carrying out disinformation campaign with the much talked phrases like “human shield”, and others.
Nandikadal provides a powerful doctrine that carries the potential to show the Tamils their path to liberation. Not just the Tamils, the doctrine is a beacon of hope to hundreds of subdued ethnicities to their path to true independence.
When we utter “the Doctrine of Nandikadal”, some think the doctrine provides dimensions that are political and apolitical.
The doctrine talks about the life of an individual subdued race set with a bitter history of genocide looming in the background. By doing so the doctrine pushes the entire nationality in the forefront. It talks more about relation between a man and a woman, and takes a responsible look into the familial set up of the subjugated race.
The doctrine expresses concern for the culture and identity of the subjugated race to be protected at all costs. It challenges the way and means of reclaiming the lost heritage and legacies.
We can go on and talk about the doctrine’s holistic intentions.
Nandikadal is pretty clear that only such a holistic approach can chug the subjugated race to its true liberation and in the process help sustain its identity.
Mullivaikkal and Nandikadal are two names of a similar geographical region. It may be true that both these regions are separated by an inch of land. But both these lands come to signify rather contrasting stories. They bespeak and register in our mind very different political and historical stories.
“Vaikkal” in Mullivaikkal refers to a canal where the water may at times be stagnant and kadal in Nandikadal means open sea or ocean in Tamil. Going by the meaning of Vaikkal and Kadal, Mullivaikkal represents a stagnant politics and Nandikadal represents politics of vastness that is not bounded by any boundaries.
When Pirabaharan leaves Mullivaikkal to reach Nandikadal, the aforesaid change has happened. Without comprehending this, we often get stuck at Mullivaikkal only to remain stagnant.
The place where we need to search for our liberation is at Nandikadal. Besides us, the calm sea of Nandikadal provides a moral backing for all the subjugated races.
When Mullivaikkal massacre happened with the overt blessings of the prevalent draconian world order and its’ ruthless Governments, the reaction manifesting itself at Nandikadal denotes that this ill-conceived world order will be subject to destruction that will be beyond imagination.
The arrival of figures like Narendra Modi, Donald Trump, and their likes at the world political scene, and the tensions perpetrated by the North Korean regime are all recipes for a wider disaster that is awaiting to inflict the current world order. The doctrine of Nandikadal precisely predicts such an outcome.
When the subjugated races come together with consciousness, they will have the power to destroy the current world order and shape a world order that is absolutely pro people. That is the nature of challenge posed by Nandikadal.
The world order of countries led by the likes of Modi and Trump reside on the ground that are built with the steadfast support of the super riches of the world, the corporates, the bankers and the conglomerates.
Nandikadal, the central dogma of “Pirabaharaniyam”, warns explicitly about the world order spawned by these crony capitalists.
As a direct bearing, “Nandikadal” instead of attacking the Governments, talks explicitly about the destruction of this unjust world order forged by the crony capitalists, and the corporates.
Nandikadal, the central dogma of “Pirabaharaniyam” does not indulge in directly attacking and criticizing the Governments, rather it identifies and attacks the covert and sometimes overt tactics employed by these ruthless Governments.
The dogma furthers the destruction of the current world order to bring the much needed liberation and the just rights of the subdued races. This ensures a new world order where there is place for everyone.
The changes that are rapidly happening world over are the changes outlined broadly by the doctrine of Nandikadal. The current world order is at flimsy grounds and is getting ready to implode anytime soon and Nandikadal doctrine prepares us for the inevitable.
Therefore it is imperative that all the subdued race keep themselves in a state of readiness. A global churn encompassing all the countries of the world is on the cards anytime soon.
Pirabaharaniyam, the contemporary liberation doctrine, would provide meaning to such a revolution.
The world we live is made of three quarters of water. The composition of water in the human body incidentally has the same equation.
International relations and the strategy behind were defined by oil. The trend is slowly shifting towards access to international high sea for trade and commerce.
Geographically Tamil Eezham is surrounded by high sea on its three directions. The status of the land, the strategic importance and its politics, everything is defined by the high sea.
It is the same high sea that connects another land of the Tamils, Tamil Nadu, with Tamil Eezham.
It is this psyche, political significance, and dynamism that are responsible for catapulting Pirabaharan to walk towards “Nandikadal” in his final days.
Nandikadal had its fair share of fear and doubt if it could assimilate the world’s tallest revolutionary.
The sea at Nandikadal relinquished its fears and doubts at an instant after it realized the gargantuan responsibility it is going to be vested, in providing for a doctrine that shall serve as a beacon of hope for all the subdued races and ethnicities to achieve their goal of liberation. Sensing the obligations, it slowly began assimilating the tallest revolutionary into its character.
It was the story of a water body that began replicating a wonderful human’s psyche which was hitherto incalculable and unpredictable to many.
As a consequence, Nandikadal has earned a reputation of being deeply embedded in history.
The H2O doctrine of Nandikadal
When a vanquished ethnicity that was subject to genocide remains governed by the victorious, Nandikadal doctrine says that the subdued race begins to show five dimensions of politics.
Those are the politics of destruction, politics of shame, politics of slavery, politics of surrender and the politics of abdication.
Nandikadal proceeds to say that a genocidal government will take parallel measure of employing two types of politics.
Those are, the politics of annihilation; where all the time bound identities, the very presence and the politics of the subdued are all subjected to annihilation, and the politics of destroying the collective memories.
The bipolar situation facing the vanquished races in dealing simultaneously with the five political dimensions that has manifested from within on one hand and the cunning politics of the victorious on the other hand, has enough potential to wreck the identity of the subdued. Nandikadal forewarns the subdued race about the impending failure to construct a politics of “meaningful resistance” in the wake of this two pronged challenge they are left to face with.
It is at this juncture, Nandikadal introduces the “H2O Doctrine” to the subjugated races. A doctrine that talks explicitly about the wherewithal to come out of their subjugation and taste victory.
H2O is the chemical formula of water. When water combines with other elements, the reaction it yields produces assorted chemical and physical changes. In a similar fashion, the struggle of the subdued race, when they interact with various political realities, produce changes. Nandikadal doctrine provides a sort of shield as the ethnicities undergo and experience these changes.
The core aspect of the doctrine is to drag the subjugated ethnicities from their defeated mind-set and their collective shame, and advance them to take up politics of resistance.
It then extends its role to provide strategies for confronting, self-protecting, coordinating, infiltrating, attacking and finally demolishing the establishments that subjugate them.
The doctrine, though contains terms that are related to war plans, actually outlines strategies to resist the designs of ruthless regimes without having a need to take up an armed struggle and shedding a drop of blood.
The psyche of the Tamil Tigers and water (sea) is something interesting. It is indeed a magic.
In the past, whenever Tigers were believed to be defeated, they came back with a vigour like never before and their coming back was interestingly termed “Unceasing waves”.
For reasons unknown, water characterized their remarkable sign of resistance.
And today that magic has happened in Nandikadal too.
The final strategy of Tamil Tigers being defined and drawn by a water body, being christened as “Doctrine of water”, and entering the annals of history is indeed a magic.
The strategy of “water” that encompasses the principle of waves, the principle of buoyancy, the principle of swimming, and the principle of diving, is denominated as “Unceasing Waves” by the Doctrine of Nandikadal.
History is indeed miraculous!
Nandikadal attracts the attention of the ethnic group being subjugated to genocide to carefully analyse five different words repeatedly used by the genocidal regime they are left to deal with.
They are; rehabilitation, reconstruction, development, ethnic unity and rapprochement.
These words appear to be soothing to the hearts and minds of the subjugated race, the race that appears to be disintegrating and perishing when looked from outside. But on close observation, it is a ball game to politically isolate the subjugated race and subject it to continued repression and genocide.
Nandikadal decidedly warns about it and calls it a cunning trick. It also cautions the forces that work for this ploy, with or without knowledge and awareness.
Nandikadal postulates and puts in forefront the strategies the subjugated races have to adopt. Strategies that closely resemble the behaviour of water, of waves that do not cease, of being buoyant, to be able to swim with and against the current.
Nelson Mandela – Fidel Castro – Veluppillai Pirabaharan
If the strategies are against the will of the western world, any struggle is termed “terrorism”. If the strategies, on the contrary, are aligned with those of the western world, the struggle is termed “movement for liberation”.
This is the brief story of how Mandela who was once termed extremist, is now called a liberator.
The reason why Pirabaharan was always an extremist was because he never aligned his struggle with the western world and refused to toe their lines. He rather contemplated to change the existing world order.
Castro too did not succumb to the arm twisting tactics of the western world. He attempted to create a new international dialogue.
But Castro’s sole agenda of opposing the international powers failed spectacularly when in fact the very powers he opposed, ganged up, to put down the uprisings of the subjugated races in the garb of opposing “smaller governments” that are against the established world order. Tamil Eezham is witness to that blunder in contemporary history.
It is at this juncture, Nandikadal comes to occupy a central place. The blunders of Mandela’s and Castro’s doctrines, and many other doctrines that emerged and got razed, opens up a remarkable front for the subjugated races at Nandikadal.
This is the basis upon which Veluppillai Pirabaharan comes to be placed next to the likes of Mandela, Ho Chi Minh, Yasser Arafat and other notable global revolutionaries.
History of the world renewed itself and underwent a sea change after the dismantling of Berlin wall , disintegration of the Soviet Union, and the 9/11 incident.
Some personalities like Francis Fukuyama attempted to write a final history of the world basis these events.
But the dark hours of May 17, 2009 saw a small water body standing witness to an incident that was unheard of in human history. An incident that unfortunately did not capture the eyes of the world.
The events that unfolded in the dark hours became historic for the races that were facing brutal subjugation.
It was the mother of all battle grounds this century. A remarkable history was created that day.
After fair delays, the water body is eternally ready to provide fodder to world historians, philosophers and the likes.
Nandikadal puts every international doctrine on the struggle of subjugated races to reconsideration and reanalysis. It questions Marxism, Communism and all those isms that claim to represent people in the backdrop of a genocide.
Nandikadal poses intriguing questions while weighing the modern states of the globe, the world order they have spawned and their international politics, alongside the postulates of the new countries that emerged after their long struggle for independence. The compelling questions no doubt demand a reanalysis of both the happenings.
The answers to these questions procreates as “Pirabaharaniyam” before us.
Pirabaharan saw many incidents as history in the making what others saw as mere happenings. What others thought were casual events made, Pirabaharan saw as events that rather carried hidden agenda, or rather agendas.
The very reason why when everyone’s eyes were anchored on Mullivaikkal, he walked to Nandikadal.
Pirabaharaniyam shuns the word “failure”.
The repeated failures of a subdued race is not failure according to the nuances of Pirabaharaniyam but it is rather a setback. But it goes on to shun this word too and describes such events as “backfoot”.
Nandikadal doctrine vehemently argues that the setbacks of a subdued race that has been waging unsuccessful attempts towards it slated goal of liberation cannot be called “failures” in any sense.
The psyche of the Tamils and the Tamil Tigers after the genocidal war.
What does Nandikadal speak about it?
A race that has suffered unspeakable destruction and violence slowly has to pull itself up and coordinate within itself to move forward. In that sense it is imperative that the people and the militants who faced unspeakable violence have to get a fair psychological counselling. The doctrine of Nandikadal commences rightly emphasizing the need of it.
Barring the thousands who have lost their life in the brutal war, the remaining who were captured live and detained illegally in torture chambers of the state, and heavily inflicted with physical and mental wounds, have been released inside the society to play a morally detrimental role as determined by the brutal regime. On the other side, are people who cannot get a foothold in life after the brutal carnage unleashed on them. Nandikadal aptly points to the fact that when both come to face each other, they would indeed be mutually repulsive.
Nandikadal outlines the fact that the fractured psyche of the erstwhile militants will manifest in different forms – as deep hatred to their ex-colleagues, as repulsive thoughts on their liberation struggle, as abuses, as deep fear that will manifest as surrender mentality, and many more.
The erstwhile militants we see in our homeland are loitering with such tendencies and they are living proofs of the state of affairs.
Excluding the thousands who have been killed in the horrifying war, the psyche of the rest of the population are being corrupted and deteriorated systematically.
Hunger, poverty, crass practices that destroy our famed culture are being systematically promoted. The psyche of the people and ex-militants are being manipulated to suit their interest by pitting one against the other.
Nandikadal cautions carefully that people unfortunately would fall prey to it and start believing the stories being spun. Conspiracy at work!
As a result, a large schism develops between the general populace and the ex-militants who are with new identities and now psychologically distressed.
In a span of time, both the groups begin to exchange the psychological distress and show signs of aggravated distress.
This invariably results in exchange of abuses and refusing and refraining each other. Nandikadal warns that the situation will be conducive for the brutal regime and the bootlickers, to serve their interests pretty well.
We are mere silent spectators witnessing the incidents as it unfolds.
Hence Nandikadal assures that the Tamils and the ex-militants can mend their relations, find a path to coordinate and rise as one race to face the future challenges.
The different dimensions of the relations are explored taking a cue from the water doctrine.
Nandikadal strongly recommends to devise an international policy to deal with the happenings in the international arena.
On the basis of the water doctrine, Nandikadal conveys in no clear terms that, the international policy strategy provides a robust platform to firm up our future plans and take up our cause in full steam.
Nandikadal opines that all races possess inherent strengths that will keep it from getting annihilated despite seeing the worst destruction and facing annihilation.
Our strength in this aspect lies in Tamil Nadu. On this basis
By creating foreign policy drafts for Tamils or by forming a “Tamil Lobby”, together with Tamil Nadu, a think-tank can be established. Nandikadal alerts that if we do not establish this lobby in a meaningful span, we would be lost in the ever unfolding geo-political game.
The machineries of establishment – the crony capitalists, and the corporates that guard its operations; employ various interest group that are not at cross roads. And they would be systematically infiltrated among the targeted races.
They would appear in the guise of being progressive and forward thinking.
A classic recent example that can be quoted is Jallikattu.
The so called progressive forces acted against Jallikattu in the name of animal rights. They declared that the tradition is male chauvinistic, archaic and has no place in a modern society.
When the entire student community, women and the entire race felt that their ancient tradition is coming under a systematic assault, and organized themselves through mass protests, these phony progressives took a backseat.
Nandikadal requests to be aware of these phonies in every races.
The cultural elements of an ethnic group, its ceremonies, its traditional games, its religious rituals; all carry the belief system and the wisdom of the ethnic group for generations. They not only serve the purpose of continuity but can also serve to ward off all the measures that are aimed at committing a systematic genocide against the ethnicity.
Nandikadal emphasizes the need to organize micro level protests that involves people on the ground on a continuous basis.
Nandikadal reiterates the fact that the protesting people can change the form and style of the protests but can never succumb to any pressure whatsoever and give up protesting all together.
Nandikadal defines that the protesting attitude is indeed an asset that has the strength to give permanent defeat to every other sinister design of brutal regimes.
As a race that fights for its liberation, our men should realize how a military strategy too can give a helping hand.
Though we have completely abdicated our claims to the land, Nandikadal introduces these military strategies in different ways.
Though we have relinquished some of our urban, rural areas, and roads, Nandikadal asserts that we keep a control and maintain continuity over our forests, woods, water bodies, and our coastal regions.
Nandikadal explains that only continuity of resources can ensure continuity of protests. By subjecting the military and political activities of the genocidal regimes, to continued questioning and, by raising serious exceptions, by organizing people’s protest, by resurrecting popular protests, and by skirmishes, the military and political strategies of the genocidal regime shall be disrupted.
Hence if our forests are being destroyed, it should be understood that our possible military strategies of the future are coming under attack now.
But Nandikadal has observed all these micro details and highlights them to our generation.
Few years back, some militants under the able leadership of Deivigan sacrificed themselves for the cause. They are perfect example of the military strategy that Nandikadal asks us to adopt.
Similarly the mass uprisings of “Keppapulavu” people is a wonderful example of people’s movement.
Therefore by not buckling to the sinister designs of the establishment and by coming out from a failure mentality, we can go a long way and retain the momentum of protest.
Nandikadal demands that the ethnic groups waging a struggle for their liberation need to keep themselves in a fluid state like water. Nandikadal opines that only in a fluid state, the ethnicity can fill itself to any shape and carry forward its struggle.
Nandikadal compares this attitude to its demeanour and calls it by the name “Water Theory”.
Outside the battle field, the victory of the genocidal regimes in the international arena is immaterial if back home they could not crush the rebellion of the races they have subjugated. The continued strategies to bruise the protests is what keep them successful.
That is because the regional and geopolitical forces are ready to attack the Sinhalese quoting the same world order they have created.
But the adversaries do not have any tactics to deal with the uprising of the people in a large scale. They just do not have the wherewithal to confront a race that has absorbed and assimilated the nuances of “Pirabaharaniyam”.
In the contemporary world, victory depends on who has the competency to sustain the victory earned.
The exact reason why Nandikadal appeals to keep the spirit of protests live among the Tamils and organize for small demonstrations so that the momentum can be sustained.
Nandikadal once again reiterates the fact that the protesting people can change the form and style of the protests but can never succumb to any pressure whatsoever and give up protesting all together.
It is this stubborn character that can give the occupier a face of failure. Nandikadal says that this character forms the principle capital of the protesting race.
The message of Nandikadal to Muslims
Nandikadal fully agrees to a separate identity of Muslims if majority of them feel so quoting their cultural differences.
These are some of the knots faced by many races while they fight their oppressor. If some elements within the fighting races feel they are different in identity, the oppressor gets a brownie point. Nandikadal cautions that a devious plan by the oppressor can create rift within the races and can contribute to their downfall.
But without these understandings, if the Muslims continue their efforts of aligning with the establishment only to destroy the geography and occupy the land of the Tamils, they would then have to face the reality of their identity being questioned and brace themselves to lose their current status.
The acts of the Muslims to align with the genocidal establishment is myopic and will generally undermine their quest for individual identity.
Nandikadal shows extreme concern for these fringe nationalities.
When the day beckons for the Tamils to win their homeland back from the oppressor, when the country breaks into two nations, one for the Sinhalese and one for the Tamils, the attitude of the Muslims shall make them go nowhere. Nandikadal warns the Muslims of the plight that awaits them.
So this is in a way is a forewarning to the Muslims by Nandikadal.
Because Nandikadal does not expresses concern for the Tamils alone who are waging a liberation struggle. Rather it takes cognizance of the fact that many races are waging a similar war and provides tactical support in its doctrine.
Pirapaharan opens new home for elderly [TamilNet, 05 June 2004]
Leader of the Liberation Tigers (LTTE), Velupillai Pirapaharan, attended the opening ceremony of a new building in the Home for the Elderly, ‘Anpucholai,’ in Kilinochchi and awarded prizes of faith to many older parents of LTTE war heroes, sources from Vanni said.
Pirapaharan was accompanied by his wife, Mathivathani, for the event.
Director of Welfare of Families of War Heroes and Fighters, Thirukumaran, presided the event.
Leader of LTTE Political Wing, S.P.Thamilchelvan raised the Tamil National flag and Director of LTTE’s Heroes Cemetaries, Pon.Thiyagam, lit the lamp of freedom. Mr.Pirapaharan then ceremonially opened the new builiding cutting the ribbon.
Special Commander of LTTE’s Sea Tigers, Col.Soosai, Senior Member of the LTTE, V.Balakumaran, Deputy Leader of LTTE Political Wing, Thangan, Leader of LTTE Women’s Political Wing, Thamilini, and other LTTE cadres and parents participated in the event.
Anpucholai for several years has been involved in providing care for the elderly parents of LTTE’s martyrs.
LTTE leader Pirapaharan’s father passes away in SLA custody [TamilNet, Thursday, 07 January 2010, 12:39 GMT]
Thiruvengdam Velupillai, the father of LTTE leader Mr. V. Pirapaharan, passed away following a brief illness in Panagoda Sri Lanka Army camp Wednesday night, Sri Lankan military officials in Colombo said. The headquarters of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in a message Thursday conveyed its condolences to Mrs. Velupillai, children and relatives. The entire Tamil Nation laments for the demise of Mr. Velupillai, who preferred to be with the people during the war, the statement said. Mr. Velupillai was kept in isolation and illegal custody by the SLA and was denied of proper medical care at his grand old age, the LTTE further said.
Mr. Velupillai and his wife were detained since May in Menik Farm IDP camp and were later taken into custody by the Sri Lanka Army.
The LTTE leader’s parents had been living in Tamil Nadu in India, but opted to go to Vanni before the war broke out.
Pirapaharan father’s remains released, funeral in VVT on Sunday[TamilNet, Friday, 08 January 2010, 15:44 GMT] The funeral of late Thiruvengadam Velupillai, father of LTTE leader leader Mr. V. Pirabaharan, is to take place in Valveddiththu’rai on Sunday. The mother of LTTE leader Mr. V. Pirapaharan, Vallipuram Parvathy, was Friday released from Sri Lanka Army custody and handed over to Tamil National Alliance Parliamentarian and Presidential candidate M. K. Sivajilingam, SLA officials in Colombo said. The ailing 80-year-old mother was driven by road from Colombo to the northern Jaffna Peninsula in an ambulance.
The release of Ms. Parvathy comes a day after Pirapaharan’s father, Thiruvengadam Vellupillai, died in custody. He was 86.
The remains were handed over to Mr. Sivajilingam at a funeral parlour in Homagama Friday afternoon by the Sri Lankan military authorities.
The remains will be taken to Valveddiththu’rai along the A9 road and kept at his daughter’s residence for the public to pay their last respects.
Cremation will take place on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. in Valveddiththu’rai.
Remains of Pirapaharan’s father cremated in VVT [TamilNet, Sunday, 10 January 2010, 13:20 GMT] Late Thiruvengadam Veluppillai, father of LTTE leader Mr. V.Pirapaharan, was cremated at the central cremation grounds in Oo’ra’ni Valveddiththu’rai Sunday around 2:30 p.m with thousands of mourners participating in the last funeral rites, sources in Jaffna said. Thousands of people from all parts of the peninsula joined in the procession when the remains were taken from Pirapaharan’s home in Aaladi in Valveddiththu’rai (VVT) while black flags were flown and sombre music was played in VVT, despite the intimidating presence of a large number of Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers and policemen, the sources added. Thol. Thirumavalvan, the leader of Viduthalai Chi’ruththaika’l from Tamil Nadu and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian Sivajilingam paid their last tribute at the cremation grounds. Prominent Tamil political leaders from Tamil Nadu including Vaiko and Pazha Nedumaran paid homage by phone from Tamil Nadu.TNA Parliamentarians Sivajilingam and Gajendran were present near Thee’ruvil memorial monument where the remains were kept for people to pay their last respect, from 5:30 p.m Saturday. Both were with the remains until cremation.
Saturday night, TNA parliamentarians including Mavai Senathirajah, Suresh Premachandran, Pathmini Sithamparanathan, Selvam Adaikalanathan, Vinotharalingam, Sivasakthi Anandan led by TNA parliamentary group leader R. Sampanthan paid their last respects.On Sunday the remains of late Thiruvengadam Velupillai was taken from Thee’ruvil to the house in which LTTE leader Pirpaharan was born and from there to the cremation ground in procession.
The procession went along Tho’ndaimaanaa’ru-VVT road to VVT junction and from there to Oo’ra’ni along Point Pedro-VVT road.
Thousands of men and women and school children from all parts of the peninsula took part in the procession.Songhttps://dai.ly/x706dhw
“Any country and any community that does not break the shackles of women’s oppression, cannot say that it has attained full societal liberation – National Leader of Tamil Eelam”
The words of the LTTE leader, V Prabhakaran were remembered through posters displayed across the University of Jaffna.
The posters, which were put up anonymously inside the premises, feature a photograph of Prabhakaran with a quote.
A cake was also cut by students in secret as the clock struck midnight to mark his birthday on November 26.
“To analyse a problem and to reach a verdict, an exceptionally balanced mind is essential. A just vision – selfless, without any personal likes or dislikes and not giving way to emotions and familial affection – is essential – National Leader of Tamil Eelam”
“There should not be a dictatorship within the arts. If there is it will not grow – National Leader of Tamil Eelam”
“How ever the material world is organised, without vast changes within men’s mindsets on the male view of femininity, women’s equality will not be possible – National Leader of Tamil Eelam”
Responding to a Sri Lankan police petition, Jaffna Magistrate Court on Friday issued a ban on the use of what it described as the LTTE flags, symbols and maps at the planned Maaveerar Naal event in Koppay Thuyilum Illam.
Earlier this week Koppay police applied for a ban of the remembrance event under section 120 of the penal code – inciting or seeking to incite hate – and Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) regulations.
Magistrate Sinnaththurai Satheestharan’s ban specified the use of LTTE symbols was prohibited. No prohibition was made against the holding of the event however.
Private land by the thuyilum illam, which is currently being occupied by the Sri Lankan military, was cleared and decorated by locals in preparation of Maaveerar Naal on November 27.
The foreign intelligence agency of India, known as the Research and Analysis Wing’ (RAW), has advised its counterpart in the island to transform Tamil Eelam Maaveerar Naa’l (Heroes Day) as well as all other remembrance days of the LTTE members and cadres into remembrance days bereft of identity, politics and valour. The only way to do this is getting rid of terminology associated with the LTTE, Tamil nationhood, the concept of Tamil valour. Usage of the terms ‘maaveerar’ and ‘Eelam’ should also be avoided, the RAW has advised, according to informed paramilitary sources in the island. Full story >>
Vaakai (albizia lebbeck), national tree of Tamil Eelam planted at Kangapuram
Final preparations for Maveerar Naal, the Tamil national remembrance day for fallen LTTE fighters, are underway in thuyilum illams (LTTE cemeteries) across the Tamil homeland.
Earlier this week, residents of Vakarai in Batticaloa cleared the Kandalady thuyilum illam and invited parents of Maaveerar to inaugurate the construction of symbolic headstones to replace the headstones that had been destroyed by the Sri Lankan army.
In Chatty on Velanai Island, a special commemoration was held for parents and family members of Maaveerar to pay their tributes in advance of the main event on Tuesday.
The Kanagapuram thuyilum illam in Kilinochchi which for the last two years has seen the largest crowds gather on November 27, continued to be cleared. Locals also planted vaakai (Albizia lebbeck), the national tree of Tamil Eelam in the cemetery.
The Mavadi Munmari thuyilum illam in Batticaloa, Aalankulam in Sampur, Trincomalee and Mulankavil thuyilum illam in Kilinochchi district were also cleared and decorated with flags and bunting in red and yellow, the traditional colours of Tamil Eelam.
Tamils celebrate Karthikai vilakkeedu – festival of lights
Archive: a family decorates their home with lamps and karthikai poo (gloriosa lily), a symbol of Tamil remembrance
The Tamil festival of lights known as Karthikai Deepam or Karthikai Vilakkeedu was celebrated by Eelam Tamils on Friday.
The festival falls each year on the full moon night of the Tamil month of karthikai (November). Origin stories behind the festival vary regionally, although one reason is to celebrate the birth of the Tamil god Murugan.
Another popular practice involves building a bonfire as a tribute to the God Siva who transformed into a flame ‘without beginning or end’.
Bonfire at Batticaloa Mamangeswarar kovil (above) and in Jaffna (below)
In some previous years in the Tamil homeland, the proximity of the festival’s date to Maaveerar Naal, the Tamil national remembrance day for fallen LTTE cadres, saw a military crackdown on observances such as lighting lamps and tolling bells at temples, as these were associated with remembrance practices.
The celebration of karthikai vilakkeedu took on renewed significance in militarised areas and in the diaspora as an act of Tamil resistance.
We light lamps in hope that the darkness that covers us is only the darkness of night, that evil in many forms does not destroy our roots.
Canadian Tamil artist Keera Ratnam on the significance of Karthikai Vilakkeedu
Some of the earliest references to the festival, which is also celebrated in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, are found in Sangam era literature dating as far back as the 2nd century BCE.
Dr. Ruwan M. Wijewardena A psychological analysis of Prabhakaran’s factor written by Jayathunge has been unveiled by God’s publishers.
The book also points out the leadership factors of Veluppil Prabhakaran as well as the anti-social characteristics of him. Commenting on the book, consultant Psychiatrist Sarath Panduwawala points out that the author reveals the hidden psychological aspects of Prabhakaran.
Rajiv Gandhi’s IPKF Folly Beginning and the End by Sachi Sri Kantha, May 21, 2010
Simply told, despite the propaganda of New Delhi mandarins and bucket carriers (such as the ‘House of Hindu’ scribes and Indian academics) to New Delhi Brahmins, Rajiv Gandhi was not keen on helping the Eelam Tamils. He acted to guard India’s military interests and the then Congress Party’s political interests. This also partly explains why Mervyn de Silva, among all the Sinhalese, had a ‘soft corner’ for Prabhakaran, and the feature I provide here reinforces this view. While other Sinhalese parties, namely SLFP and JVP, some elements in the UNP including the then prime minister R. Premadasa, the Sinhalese military elements, Buddhist clergy and the jingoist press were vociferous in their anti-India protest, only the LTTE leader stood up to Indian-bullying, in military terms. Dayan Jayatilleka’s piece is also revealing in that while the LTTE got the bum-rap as a spoiler, he shows that the Rajiv-Jayewardene Accord was first spoilt by the grandstanding of Gamini Dissanaiyake (an active proponent of the Accord), who was in his element of racial rabble rousing, and who defended his Sinhala colonization policy by stating that Rajiv Gandhi was made aware of his strategy and Rajiv did not object to it.
The 20th anniversary of Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) returning from Sri Lanka in March 1990 passed by relatively unnoticed. Here is a roundup of basic facts. In 1990, the ruling party in India was not Congress, the ruling party in Sri Lanka was not the SLFP. Both Congress Party and SLFP were in the opposition then. But, Karunanidhi’s DMK party was in power in Tamil Nadu. He boycotted the return of IPKF soldiers, for political reasons. Today, Karunanidhi’s DMK and the Congress Party are allies and form the ruling alliance. Though both Congress Party and SLFP are holding hands now, during 1987-90 phase SLFP strongly opposed the induction of IPKF. The current leader of SLFP, Mahinda Rajapaksa, was a nominal back-bencher without much gravitas, having returned to the parliament in 1989 after a 12 year gap. I cannot find any record that Mr. Rajapaksa deviated from the party line, and welcomed the IPKF in the island. Politics make strange bedfellows, isn’t it? For this reason alone, I should record the beginning and end of Rajiv Gandhi’s IPKF folly.
Many political follies can be listed during the five year period (1984-1989) that Rajiv Gandhi spent as the prime minister of India. Among these, I’d label the induction of IPKF in Sri Lanka as the prime folly. Bofors arms scandal was the second. Propping up Chandrasekhar Singh’s (1927-2007) minority cabinet of breakaway Janata Dal in 1990 and then pulling its political plug at appropriate time on flimsy grounds was the third. Prompting Chandrasekhar to dismiss Karunanidhi’s DMK cabinet in 1991 was the fourth. Prompting the Central Government to dismiss Janaki Ramachandran’s AIADMK cabinet in January1988 was the fifth. The list goes on.
For dissecting Rajiv’s IPKF folly, I have chosen to provide 4 items of archival interest that cannot be conveniently traced now, after 20 years.
Item 1: J.N. Dixit for the official Indian (pro-Rajiv) view,
Item 2: Mervyn de Silva and Dayan Jayatilleka for Sinhalese view,
Item 3: Time magazine feature by Lisa Beyer, for ‘rest of the world’ view, and
Item 4: Prabhu Chawla, for a not-so-flattering Rajiv view.
Prabhakaran Praised by Mervyn de Silva (in 1990) by Sachi Sri Kantha, June 17, 2009
I think that one reason why Mervyn de Silva had an incisive depth on the Sinhala-Tamil conflict was that he mainly viewed Prabhakaran from his lens as a recent product of ethnic tensions and not as the prime cause of conflict. While many pundits and journalists demarcated the year 1983 as the ‘turning point’, Mervyn de Silva traced the origins of the conflict to the British colonial period in 1919 – almost 90 years ago.
Front Note by Sachi Sri Kantha
Mervyn de Silva (1929-1999), the erudite editor of the (now defunct) Lanka Guardian fortnightly, had a keen eye in shifting the kernels from the chaff. June 22nd marks his tenth death anniversary. To pay homage to his memory, I’ve prepared here a signed feature on Velupillai Prabhakaran that he published in his magazine on January 1, 1990. He chose Prabhakaran as the ‘Man of the Decade’, who influenced the events in Sri Lanka and nearby India.
Mervyn de Silva drops quite a few names in this commentary of approximately 1,440 words. While reading this tribute to Prabhakaran, note that the names of those who are currently preening their feathers in glory are missing. Not that they were idling in the 1980s. Guys like Mahinda Rajapakse (b.1945), Gotabhaya Rajapakse (b.1949) and Sarath Fonseka (b.1950) were older than Prabhakaran. But, they were obscure non-entities then and hardly got registered in the eyes of Mervyn de Silva or in his fortnightly journal Lanka Guardian. Two of Prabhakaran’s penchant critiques (Dayan Jayatilleka and Narasimhan Ram) make cameo appearances in Mervyn de Silva’s commentary. While reading Mervyn de Silva’s commentary, you can also note that between 1989 and 2009, Prabhakaran was consistent in his ideals and objective. But such consistency was flaky for his two critics, Dayan Jayatilleka and Narasimhan Ram. It is an open secret that the Sri Lankan politician, identified by Mervyn de Silva in the third paragraph, was none other than the then President R. Premadasa. de Silva’s bottom line was: “Our choice of Prabhakaran as man of the decade is no value judgment. It is a compelling historical verdict based on the turn of tumultuous events…”.
Q: What was your perception about Prabhakaran and the LTTE when you were fighting in a ‘running army’?
A: Although it was the bitter truth, when I say it was a running Army, I know many senior officers who were serving in the Army will get offended. Since we actually ran to Thandikulam within two-and-a-half days, I wanted to call it the ‘running army’. I apologise for using the incorrect or wrong word to give a clear idea about how we fought in the past. Former Army Commander Lt. Gen. Cecil Widyaratne retired saying that he did not want to command a losing army. He tried his best to revamp and uplift the status of the SLA but he failed.
However, people didn’t think that the SLA would be victorious until the last Eelam war. A senior minister of a previous government told me during peace time: “You can’t win the war with the LTTE.” When I said that we could, he said: “Colonel, your people have been fighting with the LTTE for so long and couldn’t win a battle so that is why we have to go for peace talks.” I have mentioned this in my book. People of this country, the governments and even our own soldiers thought that the LTTE was a superior fighting force. But in 2009, we reduced the LTTE to just an ideology. I even don’t think that the LTTE will make a comeback with the same magnitude as Prabhakaran, who was an equally committed, dedicated, disciplined and ruthless terrorist leader, is no more.
He may have been uneducated but he maintained strict discipline among himself and also within the outfit. He is the man who showed the art of suicide bombing. Before Al Qaeda’s first suicide bomber, Prabhakaran had over 200 suicide bombers in the LTTE. Most of the suicide cadres were females and were ready to sacrifice their lives at the command of their leader. There is no evidence to show that he abused those female cadres in the LTTE.
He was a loving family man. The SLA recovered over 10,000 photographs of Prabhakaran, his family and LTTE functions but we never found a picture of Prabhakaran with a glass of alcohol. He was a disciplined leader and he maintained a law deadlier than Sharia law. If you steal, you lose your hand under Sharia law, but under Prabhakaran’s law you lose your life. Although he was a Hindu, he never believed in God. Once he said that God was there for the powerful countries. He was a different kind of a man and he had some good characteristics for someone to learn.
He was a firm decision maker. Whether the decision was right or wrong, he didn’t care and once a decision was taken, then it was implemented. Killing Indian Premier Rajiv Gandhi was among the most unwise decisions he had ever made. By killing Gandhi, he knew that India in its entirety and the world would come against him but still he wanted to take revenge from India for deploying the IPKF in Sri Lanka to crush the LTTE. So he killed him because he was ruthless. He had lots of patience and he was not hurry in his missions and waited for the right moment to strike.
Q: But S. Thamilini, the LTTE’s Political Wing Leader, cited in her book that war fatigue and the LTTE’s senior commanders getting old were among reasons for the LTTE’s defeat in the final battle. Your comments?
A: I have not read her book yet, but I don’t agree with these reasons for the fall of the LTTE. Whether Prabhakaran was young or old, he was the same ruthless man and his leadership until the last minute of the battle was excellent. The other leaders like Banu, Ratnam Master and Soosai also had an excellent command. Due to Soosai’s command during the last few days, nobody wanted to turn back. Their commandos performed well under the command of these leaders.
The LTTE had also suffered as it lost the leadership of Balraj, who died of a heart attack. He was one of the best commanders of the LTTE. Then the LTTE lost Karuna Amman, who was also one of the best fighting commanders. The next best commander was Theepan, who fought till the fall of Puthukkudiyiruppu. The top leadership was strong and fought till the last few hours of the final battle.
Q: Finally, LTTE leader Prabhakaran had his final 45-minute battle with your soldiers. Were you confident of capturing him?
A: I was very confident that the SLA would capture him soon. I knew it when I saw the influx of displaced people fleeing to our side seeking protection. When we looked at the map, we saw the LTTE-held areas were shrinking rapidly. Then when we came to know that the LTTE cadres were fleeing mingling with civilians to our side abandoning the outfit, we knew that the outfit was in disarray and we wouldn’t have to fight for long as Prabhakaran’s days were numbered. On the evening of 18 May 2009, the war was virtually came to an end but Lt. Gen. Fonseka and I had the same big question in our minds. Where was Prabhakaran?
I called the Commander to say that we had captured every inch of the north but he said without capturing Prabhakaran, the war would be never ended. While everyone was eagerly waiting to see Prabhakaran, the troops of the fourth Vijayaba Infantry battalion killed him after a 45-minute-long confrontation at the Nandikadal Lagoon.
Q: Some say that he was brought to Colombo and killed. Your comments?
A: This is a rumour and will remain as a rumour. The truth is he was killed during the confrontation. Nobody knew Prabhakaran was there till 19 May morning. It was the last confrontation we had with the LTTE.
As a soldier, the most unforgettable moment in my life was having the man who had played with our lives for nearly three decades lying in front of me and my men was cheering saying, “Sir, we killed Prabhakaran.” While I am being proud I must say that the war ended due to immense dedication of all the division commanders and soldiers. It was a collective effort.
Q: How do you recall the days when you were fighting in Eelam II and Eelam III?
A: It was sad to say that in those days, people were not bothered even if the LTTE had killed 50 soldiers. But the entire nation mourned if a cricketer had a run out for a few runs. This happened because the Army was losing continuously in the battlefronts. People didn’t have much faith in the fighting strength of our soldiers and thought the LTTE was more powerful than us. In all the operations, except for a few operations like Balawegaya, in which we liberated Elephant Pass and Thrividabalaya, in which we rescued Jaffna Fort, we ended up with disasters.
If you take the Jayasikuru operation, in which we advanced for more than two-and-a-half years, many soldiers were wounded and killed in action. Though we reached Mankulam, we couldn’t hold the position as the LTTE was heavily attacking us, so we ran up to Thandikulam within two-and-a-half days. Why? Because we were short of manpower to fight and hold the position. Thanks to one Col. Roshan Silva, we stationed at Omanthai.
We were a ‘running army’ those days. I am trying to say in my book how this running army became a victorious army in the Eelam IV war.